Q: Echo Echo is the third of your books of reverso poems. How did you come up with the idea originally, and why did you choose to focus on Greek myths this time?--Marshal Zeringue
A: For readers who haven’t encountered it, the reverso is a poem with two halves. The second half reverses the lines of the first half, with changes only in punctuation and capitalization. That second part has to say something completely different from the first.
Reversos work particularly well based on narratives and as such fall into three categories which feature either: 1) one character with two POVs; 2) one character at two points in time; 3) two characters, usually with opposing POVs.
My first two books of reversos were based on fairy tales, which have strong stories, so I could make them fit into one of the above categories. Greek myths also have multi-layered narratives, and they are taught in school. In addition, I’ve always loved them, and so do most students. It was a natural extension to go from fairy tales to...[read on]